Diatomaceous Earth

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by jonterhaar, Aug 9, 2007.

  1. jonterhaar

    jonterhaar Hatching

    Aug 9, 2007
    Hi all!

    I was directed to this site by a happy user who told me there are a lot of you who are having problems discerning differences between different types of DE and also having trouble finding it. I would like to be of help to any of you who have been or are becoming keen to "green" awareness, especially when it comes to pest control.

    I've been working with DE for a long time now and can clear up any questions you might have, or at least try. Please feel free to email me or ask on this forum - jonathan@earthduster.com

  2. eggzettera

    eggzettera Songster

    Hey welcome & thanks! I bought "Poultry DE" is this the same as "food grade". I am at work right now will be able to tell you brand tomorrow - but if its says its for poultry it should be right?
    edit for spelling...
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 9, 2007
  3. wren

    wren Songster

    May 27, 2007
    St Augustine, FL
    Is the amount of crystalline silica one of the determining factors as to D.E.'s level of safety? I found a brand that has directions for feeding to livestock but also suggests using a respirator when you handle it. It's around 10% silica Needless to say, I won't be using it.

    Perma Guard is the only manufacturer I've found so far that has a "safe" D.E. (less than 1% silica) are there others?
  4. Bubba

    Bubba Songster

    Jun 18, 2007
    Welcome Jonterhaar!!

    Where do you hail from?

  5. jonterhaar

    jonterhaar Hatching

    Aug 9, 2007
    Hi all,

    I'll try to answer as best I can your questions.

    Bubba, I lived in Pensacola, FL for 27 years and have recently moved to Fayetteville, AR to help with a DE Duster operation called Earthduster.

    wren, yes the crystalline silica percentage is what determines the safety of DE with regards to breathing it into your lungs. I won't expose myself to the dust of any DE that is over 1% crystalline silica, and when I do expose myself to that dust, I always use one of those cheap hospital masks that are a dime a dozen - we can never be too careful. Perma-Guard "fossilized shell flour" is DE with less than 1% crystalline silica and they are the biggest distributor of food grade (safe) DE. They are my biggest supplier and great dealing with. They also distribute DE mixes for more specific uses.

    MeanQueenNadine, "poultry grade" DE should be ok/safe, but there are many types of DE on the market - some safer to animals and humans than others. Look to see if the crystalline silica percentage is on the package - if it is less than 1%, then it is considered "food grade" and safe to ingest into your and into your animals' digestive systems. This type of DE is the one I am most familiar with and use all the time. It is actually beneficial in that is breaks down stomach and intestinal parasites. Mix 2% food grade DE into your usual feed for best results.

    What is so great about food grade DE is that it is safe and has so many benefits - great organic, natural pesticide (It really works!), great for stomach/intestinal worming, and great water absorber - try it on stagnant water that mosquitoes lay their eggs in!

    I just wish more people in the big pesticide businesses knew about it...
  6. s6bee

    s6bee Songster

    Jul 1, 2007
    Western, NY
    How old does/should your chicks be before using DE?
  7. siz8003

    siz8003 Songster

    Jul 31, 2007
    where can you find DE no one around or near me sels the food grade kind and need to get my hands on some
  8. RoyalHillsLLC

    RoyalHillsLLC Songster

    Mar 5, 2007
    NW Louisiana-Vivian
    I am a "big pesticide business". I am product manager for a large distributor. I have yet to see any research by a reputable organization (Universities, etc) showing it works. If you have enough data to prove what you promote works well and is any safer to humans than currently used pesticides I would have no reason to not sell it.
  9. imloulou

    imloulou In the Brooder

    Jun 8, 2007
    NW Florida Gulf Coast
    Quote:Well dang-blasted jonterhaar...read this thread....


    A few of us live in/near Pensacola and have been talking about DE!!!! I moved from St. Louis to Pensacola 15 years ago. I would really like to buy local to save on shipping and also to support local businesses. I don't mind driving 30 minutes or so...Do you have any recommendations? We have had chickens for a few months. I am really interested in DE. We have dogs, chickens, cats, fleas, etc. But do not like the fleas on the dogs or bugs in the food.

    I have used DE in the past for my gardens (not food grade) but decided a while back that I would not use it anymore because of all the beneficial bugs that we have...and love. I am very interested in using it for our chickens, their feed, our dogs and their fleas. (that was almost poetic![​IMG] )

    Any suggestions?

  10. jonterhaar

    jonterhaar Hatching

    Aug 9, 2007
    RoyalHills, there is plenty of data online - start by checking the OMRI database - omri.org. Here is a link right from the proverbial horse's mouth, PermaGuard - the largest distributor of DE in the country - http://permaguard.com/faq.html - You should do a little testing yourself - try it out against your usual toxic chemicals and see for yourself how well it works, comparatively.

    imloulou, Hope you're staying cool down there on the Gulf! I am trying to find some dealers/distributors in the Panhandle area right now and am seeing a lot of positive impressions thus far. My mother knows a lot of the nursery owners down there, so she's stirring the pot a little bit for me. To get rid of fleas, put small bit of food grade DE in your hand (1 teaspoon or so) and simply pet it into your pet's fur. Repeat once per week until the fleas are gone. You can put it in cupboards for roaches and dust it around your house for all kinds of insects, but you've pointed out something important - you don't want to harm your beneficial insects, so be specific where and how you apply DE.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: